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[Journey] Growing A Money Tree Via Blogging In 2021!

shaunm

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With this journey thread, I am going to focus on growing one specific blogging project throughout 2021. Although most of the content generation for the project will be done between January and March with regular updates, I will post anything relevant that happens after that as well as reaching traffic/income milestones and monthly updates on the growth of the blog too.
  • I have settled on a niche for the blog, this was actually harder than I initially thought it would be as this is only going to be a relatively small blog so I didn't want to use a niche I could potentially make an authority site with in the future. Although the niche is related to one of my interests, it is something that I have only been interested in for a few months so I don't know the topic as well as I would like.
  • I have done some initial keyword acquisition today for the project to get some general keyword ideas for the blog. I basically just used Answer The Public and Keyword Sh*tter and ended up with 1119 initial keywords to check the competition of after removing the keywords with 0 predicted search volume in Keywords Everywhere. As it's snowing pretty heavily here right now, I will probably spend most of tomorrow going through these initial keywords to see how many of them are actionable for articles. While doing the keyword competition analysis tomorrow for the keywords I will also be doing alphabet soup, people also asked, and wildcard checks in Google to see if I can find other keyword ideas as I go.
 
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shaunm

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  • I have had a few other things on today but managed to blast through the initial keyword competition analysis over the last three hours or so. I still have a bunch of keywords that I sourced last night to check if I end up needing more for this project though. I also used alphabet soup, people also asked, and wildcarding on the successful keywords to try find more, similar keywords that are lower competition. I have 219 keywords that I have screened now, I will try to cut that down to an initial 100 that I will action for articles. I have some stuff I have to do offline tomorrow and Tuesday so not sure if I will have time to do much other than settle on the initial 100 keywords until Wednesday now.

Good news you start another one @shaunm
You inspire me to make 1st journey thread
& earned $9k commission last year
Hope more people follow your example

Cheers dude, congrats on your income :).
 

shaunm

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  • I went over each of the 219 keywords that I had filtered earlier and settled on around 100 that I want to actually publish articles for. The split is pretty close to 25 higher price point buyer intent for just Amazon Affiliate links with 25 informational intent, 25 hybrid, and 25 zero search volume that will have both Amazon Affiliate links and display ads on their pages. I am actually surprised by the potential in this niche for some of the buyer intent keywords in all honesty.
  • When settling on the 100 keywords for articles I noticed that some items are low in stock on Amazon.com. Not sure if this is due to the lockdowns but I have tried to keep keywords that have limited stock for their main product as a backup for a potential secondary content batch with the items without the limited stock warning making up as many of the initial keywords as possible.
  • I spent a little bit of time doing some initial niche research but it was mainly stuff to try workout angles for keywords and the type of word count I would be able to publish for them.
 

azgold

Administrator
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Dojo Master
Welcome back, Shaun! Hope you had a nice, well-deserved time away. :)

Good luck with your blog project. Hopefully, since it's something you have some interest in, there'll be an element of fun, too. If nothing else, you'll learn more about it as you research for content.

I love watching money trees grow, so will be following along. :D
 

shaunm

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  • Spent more time than I would have liked thinking up domain names today as most were either parked with a massive price tag or had been used before and dropped. I eventually settled on a fresh domain for registration price that had not been used before after checking it in Wayback Machine.
  • I purchase the hosting, setup SSL, and pointed the nameservers from my domain registrar to the hosting so just waiting for it to propagate now so I can work on the blog. I managed to churn out most of the offline stuff for other projects I had to get done while waiting for propagation and because my home city is in lockdown, most of the offline stuff I had on over the weekend/early next week has been canceled so I should be able to put more time into this project a few days earlier than I had thought.

Good advice
Will add this to my product research checklist
I always learn something new in your posts

I lost thousands last year as the main brand for one of my sites is in China and their shipments were quarantined so their items were out of stock for around two months :(.

Welcome back, Shaun! Hope you had a nice, well-deserved time away. :)

Good luck with your blog project. Hopefully, since it's something you have some interest in, there'll be an element of fun, too. If nothing else, you'll learn more about it as you research for content.

I love watching money trees grow, so will be following along. :D

Cheers pal :).
 

shaunm

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  • Did the initial set up of WordPress as in deleted the default plugins, themes, images, comments, posts, and pages that come with a fresh install and customized a few settings the way I like them such as permalink structure and a few other things.
  • Installed the free version of the Astra theme as it's my preferred theme and did a few little customizations to that too. I was considering trying GeneratePress or OceanWP but decided to stick with Astra as I am so busy and short on time right now I can't be bothered wasting time learning a new theme.
  • Installed all of the plugins that I use for my blogs but syncing Updraft with my Dropbox account was a pain and took a while as Dropbox had locked third-party access to my account and required me to change my password and verify with 2FA before they would let Updraft sync but it's sorted now.
  • Started to gather images that are keyword relevant, crop them to the resolution I want and uploaded them to the blog in bulk to let shortpixle work on them overnight to reduce their storage size. I have some of the items for this niche so want to take some custom photographs of my own gear when I get to their keywords though so it's not just stock photographs all the time.
  • I touched base with the link building service that I want to try out with this service to make sure everything is good as I haven't received my password to log in and actually order the links after initial sign up. The initial package that I want to try from them is a skyscraper post where they will create the content and then do the outreach for it but I will be buying some guest posts and niche edits directly to specific pages over the coming months.
The lockdown for my home city is making offline tasks for offline projects take much longer than usual but I am still hoping to have them all done by Sunday. If I can hit that target then I should be able to work on my online projects until my home city comes out of lockdown.
 

shaunm

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  • Setup Google Analytics. I didnt want Analytics 4 so had to waste a bit of time working out how to set up a Universal Analytics property so its the old school analytics as I prefer them.
  • Setup 2FA for the blog to try keep it secure as it seems more and more people are trying to hack Wordpress blogs and I have seen a number of people have issues recently.
  • Although I usually just use one of the sites for a Privacy Policy when you Google for a wordpress Privacy Policy, I decided to try the WP Auto Terms plugin for this project. It was quick and easy but I have no idea if it actually covers me or not, added a custom paragraph about the Amazon Affiliate program and I will just wait and see how it goes. If I dont have issues, I will probably just use the plugin in the future as it really is much easier.
  • I ordered a logo from a vendor on Fiverr for the blog, not essential and I could have just tried to make something on Canva but I rather outsource it due to being so busy right now.
  • Made some custom comparison table graphics that fit the branding of the blog that essentially act as a star rating system for my comparison tables.
  • Typed up the first article for the blog, it is a product comparison article and ended up being 4014 words long.
From what I can tell, all of the offline stuff that I had to get done is now done until my home city comes out of lockdown so I should have more free time for my online projects for the forseeable future so hope to churn content out. I will probably just do a content update every week or something like that unless something special happens.

Where do you source images from atm?

I get most of them from either unsplash or pixabay these days with a small number coming from creative commons.
 

AmNovice

Affiliate
affiliate
I have done some initial keyword acquisition today for the project to get some general keyword ideas for the blog. I basically just used Answer The Public and Keyword Sh*tter and ended up with 1119 initial keywords to check the competition of after removing the keywords with 0 predicted search volume in Keywords Everywhere.
Are you using the paid versions for both? Many thanks
 

shaunm

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  • Article 1 - 2086 Words.
  • Article 2 - 1968 Words.
  • Article 3 - 1967 Words.
  • Article 4 - 1312 Words
  • Article 5 - 3371 Words.
  • Article 6 - 1947 Words.
  • I am manually force indexing each new article in Google search console to try and speed up the indexing time for the new content but nothing is tracking on my rank tracker yet.
  • Prepped my freelance content order for next month for the project.
  • Logo is complete now and added to the blog.
  • I have decided on the backlinks package that I want to initially try for this new project but have temporarily closed ordering it due to workload. If it doesn't open up over the next week or two I might go with regular guest posts and niche edits instead.
 

shaunm

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  • Article 1 - 1809 Words.
  • Article 2 - 2160 Words.
  • Article 3 - 1301 Words.
  • Article 4 - 2018 Words.
  • Article 5 - 1903 Words.
  • Article 6 - 1067 Words.
  • Article 7 - 1870 Words.
  • Article 8 - 3077 Words.
  • The backlink service that I want to use for this project is still not taking orders and may not be until the end of Feb so I might end up going with someone from the BST.
  • I have been force indexing each post after publishing it and it's doing pretty well, a third of the posts have their initial entry position in the SERP with one of them being on the first page already.
  • Spent some time playing around with the design of the site as the header and sidebar do look a little bare but I think I will just stick with a minimalist design until I know what it looks like with display ads.
@shaunm what WP plug-in are you using for Google Analytics?

Monster Insights
 

Graybeard

Well-Known Member
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I used the G-A code on the header.php file and just made a back-up snippet to paste back in when stupid WordPress overwrites all of your changes when it updates (all the time).
Updating the theme is the problem --to match the WP version.

You could also add an include("./ga-code.txt"); pathing may be problematic tho. Same issue with overwrites however.

Or, add the small overhead of the plugin. Add too many plugins and WP is slow as syrup.
 
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